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My 10 Commandments of Screen Time and Technology Use

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KIDS ON LAPTOP
Thanasis Zovoilis via Getty Images

Since it's Lent and all, I decided it was an appropriate time to examine my screen time conscience. In doing so, I evaluated the use of my iPhone and laptop.

To conduct a proper self-assessment, I pulled out our family guidelines, also known as our:

Ten Commandments of Screen Time and Technology Use

  1. Thou shall not make technology the center of thy life.
  2. Thou shall not idolize thy smart phone, laptop or lightning-fast wireless connections in the sky above or earth below or wherever it comes from; thou shall not bow down or worship any of these technological conveniences.
  3. Thou shall not use email, texts or chat as a vain substitute for real human interaction.
  4. Remember to take a technology Sabbath each week.
  5. Honor the humans in thy life, rather than the screens.
  6. Thou shall not kill the peace within thyself by overuse of technology.
  7. Thou shall not covet e-books over real books.
  8. Thou shall not steal away time surfing the Internet or watching mindless videos, when more important tasks lie in front of you.
  9. Thou shall not bear false witness about the amount of screen time in thy family life. Thou shall not relax technology use guidelines when thou art weary.
  10. Thou shall not covet thy neighbor's technology. Thou shall not covet his/her iPad mini, new smart -phone, nor any other technological wonder that belongs to him/her.

Having spent time reflecting on these commandments, I have determined that I have broken AT LEAST three.

Hear me readers, for I have transgressed. It's been four months since I last examined my technological conscience.

2. I have sinned on many occasions, coveting the coffee houses with the fastest wireless connections.

7. I continue to prefer e-books over the real deal. I know that I actually enjoy turning pages more than clicking pages. Technology Master, help me not to do the thing I am doing. I do not understand; for I am reading ebooks and am not practicing what I preach about the benefits of reading "real books!" In fact, I am participating in the very behavior I hate.

9. I am guilty on occasion of relaxing family technology use guidelines (such as waking up to reading email on my iPhone, in the restroom, of all places!).

For my penance, I shall spend the next week:

  • Showing patience with slow wireless connections in coffee houses;
  • Reading the two paperback books on my nightstand;
  • Forbidding myself from viewing my email in the early morn; rather, awakening to mentally and physically restorative, non-technological activities.

With a contrite heart and mind, I commit to amend my technologically unhealthy life.

Amen.